Q: If you’ve been absent from your workplace because you’ve been hospitalized for an emotional disorder, what is the correct response to co-workers when you return and they ask detailed questions about what happened to you?
A: First of all, you do not have to give out any details regarding either your condition or your hospitalization. If someone asks, you can simply reply that you’re feeling better and are glad to be back at work. If your co-worker presses you for details, explain that you prefer not to discuss it, although you appreciate their concern. As for those of you who are thinking about asking a colleague for details of an illness: Don’t. Let the person who has been sick or hospitalized volunteer whatever amount of information she is comfortable revealing. Otherwise, simply let her know that you were thinking about her and that you hope her full recovery is quick.